Journal of the Atlanta Campaign, kept at headquarters of the Fourth Army Corps,
Lieut. Col. Joseph S. Fullerton, Assistant Adjutant General.
MAY 1-SEPTEMBER 8, 1864.--The Atlanta (Georgia) Campaign.
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXVIII/1 [S# 72]
Part III (July)
July 1.--Generals Thomas and Howard reconnoitered the ground to be occupied by our troops when McPherson makes his movement. 9 a.m., received a note from General Newton, stating that the new line which he is to occupy is 1,420 yards in length, and with his effective force of 3,300 muskets, without deducting a picket, he will be unable to fill the line. Sent a reply to him saying that he must fill the line as well as he can. 5 p.m., received orders from department headquarters, stating, "let your artillery stir up the enemy this evening and to-morrow morning; it is feared they are getting too strong on General Schofield." Sent word to our batteries to open at once, which they did--that is, as soon as they got the message. 11 p.m., received note from department headquarters, saying:
In the directions given this evening to stir up the enemy with artillery I should have said skirmishers and artillery. I desire to make that correction.
11 p.m., sent orders to division commanders to make demonstrations with their skirmish lines (with Grose's main line) when the batteries open to-morrow a.m. between 6 and 7, and to move their troops from the front of batteries if possible; if not, for the batteries to fire solid shot. Usual picket-firing to-day; but few casualties. Day very hot.
July 2.--Nothing of importance occurred this a.m. 12.30 p.m., received instructions from department headquarters, stating that General King would move into the position to be vacated by Major-General McPherson to-night, and that after dark this corps would take the position indicated, its left resting on the Dallas and Marietta road. 1 p.m., instructed General Stanley to relieve General Newton as soon as it was dark, extend his line on the left as far as Sutermeister's battery; General Newton to relieve General Wood and to hold the line, his right resting at Sutermeister's battery, his left at Dilger's, and General Wood to relieve General King's division, of the Fourteenth Corps, his right to rest at Dilger's battery, his left on the Dallas and Marietta road. 3 p.m., received orders from department headquarters to be ready to move at a moment's warning.
At same time received Special Field Orders, No. 31, headquarters Military Division of the Mississippi, dated July 1, 1864, as follows: The usual picket-firing through the day. The day very hot. 11.30 p.m., received a note from department headquarters stating that there is reason to believe that the enemy intends to withdraw to-night, and General Thomas directs General Howard to feel the enemy at some point of his line between now and midnight, and also in the morning, for the purpose of ascertaining whether he has done so; that it will not do to attempt a night movement with a large force, as confusion would result, but be prepared at daybreak to act according to the best information that can be obtained to-night, &c. 11.40 p.m., sent order to Major-General Stanley to feel the enemy at some point in his front, to ascertain whether he had gone, and to be prepared to act in the morning in accordance with such information as he may gain of-the movements of the enemy; also sent orders to Generals Newton and Wood to be prepared at daybreak to follow the enemy if he retreats.
July 3.--2.45 a.m., General Stanley reports the enemy has gone from his front, and that his skirmishers occupy his works. 3 a.m., Generals Newton and Wood report that the enemy has left their fronts. 3 a.m., sent word to Major-General Thomas that the enemy has left our front, and he sent back word to organize the troops of this corps and be ready for pursuit of the enemy. These instructions were sent to division commanders at 3.40 a.m., and the order of march was established as follows: Stanley to lead, then Newton, then Wood. 4.50, ordered General Wood to leave one regiment in Marietta to guard the corps train which would follow his division. 5 a.m., General Stanley's column, preceded by skirmishers, started in pursuit of the enemy, moving on the Dallas and Marietta road. 7.45, received instructions from General Thomas to move down the railroad toward the Chattahoochee River, in two columns, if possible, when we reached it (the railroad). 8 a.m., our skirmishers enter Marietta. 8.45, head of Stanley s column reaches the Military Academy building, just south of Marietta. Found that General Hooker's column was here, commencing to cross ours, moving toward Marietta.
It halted, and, under orders from Major-General Thomas, commenced to make preparations to move south on the right of Palmer's column (Palmer on the right of this corps). Commenced to mass Stanley's division at the academy for the purpose of getting into shape to move down the railroad and to let King's division (on our left) pass our front and join Palmer's corps. 10 a.m., General Stanley commenced to move, having crossed the railroad and taken the road on the left of the railroad leading south. 11 a.m., the programme changed. Palmer's corps ordered to follow General Hooker, and not to march abreast of us; move to our right. 12.30 p.m., reached a point about three miles from Marietta on the road to the left of the railroad where it turned to the northeast. As this would not lead us to the railroad crossing of the Chattahoochee, halted the column, reported the fact to General Thomas, and asked for orders. At same time sent word to General Wood to detail three regiments in addition to the one ordered this a.m., to guard the train from Marietta to camp to-night. 12.50, received orders from General Thomas to move over to the railroad and march along it abreast with General King's division. Moved over to the road and marched down to Neal Dow Station, about four and a half miles from Marietta. Skirmishes all the way. At this point we arrived at 3 p.m., and were stopped by the enemy, who showed much strength in skirmish rifle-pits. After careful reconnaissance, main works in a very advantageous position were discovered. 3.30 p.m., ordered General Stanley to deploy his leading brigade (Grose's) in two lines, and to go into position in the woods just behind the skirmish line. The enemy's rifle-pits run across the middle of a cleared field. 4 p.m., it is reported (and the reports seem reasonable from the show he makes) that the enemy has three corps in line of battle in his works that are not half a mile from our front. 4 p.m., sent orders to General Newton to bring up his division along the railroad and go into position in column of regiments to the left of and in rear of General Stanley, prepared to face to the left; and ordered General Wood to bring up his division and to go into position on the left and in the rear of General Newton's division, prepared to face to the rear; also sent word for the corps train to come up and to move on the road on the right of and that hugs the railroad. 4.10, ordered Captain Bridges, acting chief of artillery, to put a few pieces of artillery in position and to try and drive the enemy out of his skirmish rifle-pits. 5 p.m., heavy skirmishing still kept up. General Palmer going into position on our right and into camp. Our right (the right of Stanley's division) rests on the left of the railroad, and Palmer's left rests on the right of the same. 9.45 p.m., received instructions from department headquarters to occupy the attention of the enemy in our front to-night and in the morning, by skirmishing and artillery, so as to prevent him from massing upon Major-Generals McPherson and Schofield, who are to attack his left flank. It is not intended that the operations shall amount to anything like a battle, but do whatever is necessary to accomplish the object without really attacking. These instructions were at once given to Major-General Stanley to carry out; was instructed to open his artillery at daybreak, to make a vigorous demonstration with a strong skirmish line, &c. But few casualties to-day. Very hot and quite dusty. Took about 200 prisoners to-day.
July 4.--1 a.m., received copy of letter from Major-General Sherman, dated headquarters Military Division of the Mississippi, Marietta, Ga., July 3, as follows:
6. a.m., General Newton ordered to advance and to take up a position abreast of General Stanley, on his left (with an interval of about the distance a brigade would occupy between them), with one brigade deployed in two lines, and the rest of his division in column of regiments in the rear; and General Wood was ordered to take position with like formation, abreast and on left of General Newton, leaving an interval that a brigade would cover between his and General Newton's divisions. 9.15 a.m., ordered General Stanley to strengthen his line of skirmishers and go ahead and take the enemy's line of skirmish rifle-pits. At same time General Newton was ordered to push forward his skirmish line in conjunction with General Stanley, and General Wood to push forward in conjunction with General Newton. Major-General Sherman, who is at headquarters, says that this must be done at once; that there is nothing in front of us but skirmishers; he has examined the ground and knows there is nothing else there. 11 a.m., General Stanley reported that he was ready, to advance his skirmish line. 11.15, Stanley's, Newton's, and Wood s skirmishers advanced; skirmishing very heavy. Stanley drove the enemy from the pits in his front and occupied them. Newton drove the enemy from part of the rifle-pits (skirmish rifle-pits) and occupied the same, and Wood drove them from like pits, but was not able to occupy them. Stanley at once advanced his main line to these rifle-pits that he took, and strengthened it by throwing up breast-works at once and advanced his pickets. The enemy tried to drive him back at one point, but did not succeed. 12.20 p.m., General Newton was directed to push up a brigade to support his skirmish line. 12.45 p.m., Generals Newton and Wood each directed to place two brigades in two lines in the advanced positions which they had gained, General Newton's right to connect with Stanley's left, and Wood's right with Newton's left. These dispositions were made without delay. We took nearly all of the enemy's skirmishers in front of General Stanley. Just in the front of our lines now can be seen the enemy's works. They are very strong and are full of troops. During the advance of our skirmishers the enemy opened fire upon them from two batteries placed in different parts of their line, one in front of Stanley's center and one in front of Newton's right. 1 p.m., General Garrard has connected with us on our left. The direction of our line now runs a little to the north of east. Stanley's right rests on the railroad and he faces south, while Newton and Wood face southeast. Stanley has one brigade in the rear of the left of his line as a reserve (the other two brigades in line), and Newton and Wood each have a reserve brigade in the rear of their lines. 5.15 p.m., instructed Generals Wood and Newton to hold their present positions if they did not think it advisable to attempt to occupy the enemy's rifle-pits in their fronts, and take those that they have not driven the enemy from, and after dark to push their skirmishers well out and have them dig rifle-pits for their protection. 6 p.m., received note from Brigadier-General Wood stating that his officers commanding skirmish line report that the enemy's skirmishers have been driven from their pits (though he does not occupy them) in his front, and that he has given orders to push out his skirmishers well after dark. 6.30 p.m., General Newton reports that Colonel Bradley has taken the rifle-pits of the enemy in his front, and that the others in front of his (Newton's) division vacated, all save one, which seems to be the end of a covered way to the house on the high hill in his front, which is easily re-enforced, and that there would be no advantage in taking it; further, his (Newton's) skirmishers are well [posted] and occupy the most favorable ground in his front. Lost in killed and wounded to-day about 130. Took 90 prisoners. Day very hot and bright.
July 5.--4 a.m., General Stanley reported that the enemy has left his front, and that he occupies his works. At once reported the fact to General Thomas. 4.15, General Newton sends report, dated 3.30 a.m., stating that he occupies the enemy's works. 4.25 a.m., directed division commanders to make preparation to follow the enemy as soon as possible, General Wood's division to lead, Newton's to follow, then Stanley's. 5 a.m. started on the march. The enemy's works proved robe very formidable. In our front were two lines of breast-works in addition to the usual line of skirmish rifle-pits. 8 a.m., it is reported that the enemy's wagon train, or a small part of it, is moving to the southeast toward the river, on our left. Sent word back to General Newton to send a brigade of infantry after it, but to move parallel to the railroad, down which our column is marching, and not far from it. Palmer's corps is moving down the main road on our right, running near to the railroad in some places and in others from one to two miles. 8.30 a.m., skirmishing quite heavy. Hazen's brigade in advance. 10 a.m., head of column arrived at Vining's Station, about two and a half miles from the river at the railroad crossing, five miles from camp, and one mile from the river on a direct road running to Pace's Ferry. Here we captured the station-master, who says that the enemy has been crossing the river since 2 this a.m. on a pontoon bridge at Pace's Ferry, and that they had torn up part of the track beyond Vining's Station. Sent this word to General Thomas, and he sent a reply to push the enemy, moving down the Pace's Ferry road and also toward the railroad bridge, or, rather, feeling in that direction, as General Palmer is moving to that point. 11 a.m., started down the Pace's Ferry road, and near the depot heavy skirmishing commenced. 11.15 a.m., the enemy charged our skirmish line and was repulsed handsomely. 11.40 a.m., our skirmish line, which has been strengthened, drove the enemy from his rail barricades. 11.50 a.m., sent word to General Thomas of this fact and asked him to have the guns from the hill in our rear cease firing as the shells were exploding over our skirmish, line. These guns are two rifled guns belonging to General Palmers corps, which have been placed on the high hill which lies between Vining's Station and the main road. From this hill we have had our first view of Atlanta. 12.30 p.m., Hazen's brigade, Wood's division, drove the enemy across the Chattahoochee, and so hard was he pressed that he could not burn the pontoon bridge over which he crossed, but cut it loose on one side so that it swung across and now lies on the other side of the river. The enemy now have heavy works on the other side of the river, and they line the bank with their skirmishers and sharpshooters, so that we cannot well cross the river now without sustaining a very heavy loss. The enemy has also opened artillery upon us from the other side, and our pontoon train is not yet up. 2 p.m., General Wood goes into position on a ridge running very near parallel with the river and about half a mile from it. Newton's division goes in in his rear and left, and Stanley's on Newton's left. We have a strong picket-line extending along our entire front, on or very near to the river-bank. Baird, commanding one of Palmer's divisions, connects with us on our right, and McCook's cavalry is moving up to connect our left with Garrard's cavalry. He will be up by 5 or 6 p.m. 3 p.m., General Thomas requested General Howard to try and get over the river in the morning. 3.30, reconnoitered for the purpose of finding ground to place our artillery on so it may assist us in crossing in the morning. 6.30, published order for the day for July 6, 1864. General Wood to try at 5 a.m., to effect a crossing at Pace's Ferry, where the enemy crossed on the pontoon bridge to-day, and if he could not cross there to cross at such point as he may select, on a pontoon bridge to be furnished him; the artillery of the first and Second Divisions to co-operate with his in this movement. 9.20, reported to General Thomas the transactions of the day, and requested him to send the pontoon train to these headquarters by 5 a.m. to-morrow. Day excessively hot. For the result of operations our casualties very small. Took 126 enlisted men prisoners.
July 6.--5 a.m., Colonel Buell, with pontoon train, reported at these headquarters; sent him to General Wood. 5.15 a.m., General Wood commenced to open his guns on the enemy on the opposite side of the river. The enemy replies with artillery. After demonstrating for some time, and carefully reconnoitering the ground, it was found that we could not attempt to cross the river without great loss of life. Major-Generals Sherman, Thomas, and Howard examined the position, and it was decided by them not to attempt to cross. The artillery and musketry fire was kept up by ourselves and the enemy across the river until about 7.30 a.m. 11.30 a.m., received instructions from Major-General Thomas to attempt only to hold our present position by a strong skirmish line and to put the troops in camp where they can have shade and water and enjoy rest for a few days, and to prepare roads so that the troops can easily and quickly debouch on the main roads leading through the country; these directions carried out. Day very hot. Casualties of the day in killed and wounded about 25.
July 7.--1 a.m., the first train arrives on the railroad from the north; construction train. 7 a.m., received a note from General Wood stating that General Baird, of the Fourteenth Corps, the pickets of whose division connected with this corps on our right last night, had withdrawn his pickets, and so disposed his division as to leave a gap of about one mile between us and the Fourteenth Corps, and that he could not fill the space with his troops. 7.30 a.m., sent word that if he could not connect with General Baird to cover his right flank with one of his brigades, placing it in the most advantageous position for this purpose. 8 a.m., the general sent Colonel Sherman to reconnoiter the ground between Generals Wood and Baird, and in so doing he was captured by the enemy. 9 a.m., General Wood reports that he has sent a brigade to cover the space between General Baird and himself. 5.30 p.m., received note from General Thomas, stating that General Schofield would cross the river to-night at Roswell Factory, about fourteen miles to our left, and secure a lodgment on the south side, and to direct the enemy's attention from him as much as possible. General Howard will display a force in front of Pace's Ferry about sundown, as if he were making preparations to cross there; to open all of our artillery on the enemy's batteries on the other side until we get the range, and then to cease firing until 8 p.m.; then to fire rapidly for about fifteen minutes or half an hour, with sufficient elevation to reach the enemy's batteries, and to have persons posted on the river-bank, in secure places, with instructions to give commands as if giving instructions to a strong column marching to cross the ferry; at same time to keep up a heavy fire from our skirmish line on the riverbank. These instructions were carried out as directed. 7.30 p.m., instructed General Wood to keep his right brigade under arms during the artillery fire to-night, for fear the enemy might attempt to cross and get between him and General Baird. 11.25 p.m., received instructions from Major-General Thomas to "send a regiment along up the river to connect with General Schofield, the bridge over Rottenwood Creek having been completed." 11.30, instructed General Newton to send a regiment to Rottenwood Creek bridge at 4 a.m. to-morrow, to repair the bridge if necessary, and to cross it and make connection with Schofield. At same time the general sent back General Thomas' communication, stating that he did not understand it, as said bridge is uninjured, and Roswell Factory, the place for Schofield to cross, is between fifteen and twenty miles from here; also the hour of sending his dispatch not mentioned, but he had ordered General Newton to send the regiment, as directed, at daylight to-morrow. Day very hot. Skirmishing and picket-firing along the bank of the river through the day. Loss to-day in killed and wounded about 15.
July 8.--2 a.m., received reply from General Thomas to General Howard's indorsement on his note, returned at 11.30 p.m., which was merely a copy of Major-General Sherman's note to him (General T[homas]), as follows:
HEADQUARTERS MILITARY DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI,
July 7, 1864.
By direction of the major-general commanding, please order your pontoon train party, with bridge, to report to Schofield, near the mouth of Soap Creek, as early to-morrow as possible; also direct General Howard to send a regiment along the river to connect with General Schofield, the bridge over Rottenwood Creek having been finished.
6 a.m., a regiment was sent as directed, and General Howard went with it. During the artillery fire and our demonstration last night the enemy, supposing that we were about to cross, cut his pontoon bridge (which was fastened on the other side of the river) loose, expecting it to float down the river into their own lines, but the current was such that it floated over to our side of the river, and it was secured by Hazen's pickets and made fast to the shore. The bridge over Rottenwood Creek was strengthened according to instructions. The regiment, which started out at 6 a.m., marched to the vicinity of the mouth of Soap Creek. The distance from the left of this corps to Schofield's right is about five miles in a direct-line and seven by practicable roads. General Schofield commenced to put down his pontoon bridge at 3.30 p.m. He crossed four regiments over and made a lodgment on the other side about an hour before sundown. 8.30 p.m., received instructions from department head-quarters stating that General Garrard. "is to effect a lodgment at Roswell Factory to-morrow morning," and as soon as he reports himself successful General Sherman is to send a corps of the Army of the Tennessee to that point. It may be necessary to send the nearest division of this corps to that point before Mc-Pherson's troops can get there, as they are so far off. Such division will therefore be held in readiness to move. Also, the troops of this corps will make a display at daybreak to-morrow, to cover the movements up the river. In accordance with these instructions, General Newton was ordered to hold his division in readiness to move, and Generals Newton and Wood ordered to make the demonstration. But 7 or 8 men wounded to-day; 1 killed. Usual picket-firing at the river. Day very hot.
July 9.--2 am., received instructions from department headquarters to move the division to Roswell Factory at daylight, and to move without wagons. 2 a.m., directed General Newton to move his division to Roswell Factory at daylight (4. 30) this morning, for the purpose of supporting General Garrard, and "making sure of anything that may be gained by him;" to take one battery, but no wagons; McPherson s troops to relieve this division as soon as they arrive at the Factory. 4 a.m., received note from department headquarters stating that it is General Sherman's opinion that inasmuch as General McPherson (?) has made a lodgment that Johnston will be forced in strategy to attack us or General McPherson, or withdraw. It is therefore directed that we take advantage of the situation by feeling the enemy's skirmishers at daylight, if we have any in our front not across the river, &c. It is now about daylight, but General Wood has just been instructed to keep up his picket-firing across the river, the only place that the enemy is in range. 5 a.m., received note from General Newton inquiring whether he was to cross the river with General Garrard or remain at the Factory, or if he crossed was he to go with Garrard, or merely see him safe on his way. At once replied:
Cross, if necessary to support General Garrard if he crosses, and the enemy does not retreat from or leave his' front. Do whatever is best to give him assistance and enable him to hold any position he may gain.
8 a.m., directed General Stanley that as General Newton's division has moved, he will picket the roads well to his left, especially the one leading over Rottenwood Creek, and establish a post at the bridge at said crossing. 9 a.m., sent a note to General Newton, on the march, directing him to construct a bridge-head on the other side of the river, provided he gets across, as soon as General Garrard gives him space to do so. 11 a.m., the enemy again opened upon us with artillery. 11.10 a.m., sent note to General Stanley stating that the enemy may be making a reconnaissance to discover our weak point; to keep a strict watch, and if you (Stanley) think he is doing so, to push a regiment of infantry to Powers' Ferry and bring it back this evening (not near enough to be exposed to artillery fire). 8 p.m., Captain Kirlin arrived from General Newton, and stated that he arrived at Roswell Ferry, and crossed over the river with two brigades at 2 p.m.; that General Garrard crossed at 6 a.m., meeting with but little opposition. 9 p.m., reported to General Thomas that two regiments of Wood's division were placed opposite General Baird's left just before dark, in support of a battery which General B[aird] will send up on the ridge; this done in accordance with instructions from department headquarters. Considerable artillery firing and the usual picket-firing on both sides to-day. Our loss in killed and wounded about 15. Day very hot.
July 10.--Received report from signal officer at daybreak that the railroad bridge over the Chattahoochee River was burning. 5 a.m., it was reported that the enemy had left the north side of the river and had retreated across it during the night, giving up their works on this side. 8 a.m., received instructions from General Thomas to move the two divisions now in camp near Pace's Ferry to within supporting distance of General Schofield, to assist him in case the enemy attempts to dislodge him. "Let them move to-day." Stanley's division started at 9 a.m. and Wood's at 10 a.m., moving by the most direct roads to Soap Creek Ferry, the point at which General Schofield crossed, and where he has his pontoon bridge over the Chattahoochee. The greater part of General Schofield's command is now in camp on the ridges on the other side of the Chattahoochee. Stanley's and Wood's divisions arrived within half a mile of the ferry (Stanley's at 2 p.m., Wood's at 3 p.m.), and went into camp, Wood on the right and Stanley on the left of the road leading to the pontoon bridge at the ferry. 4 p.m., sent note to General Newton, informing him that we had arrived and gone into camp near Soap Creek, and directed him, as soon as relieved, to move down and take position on the right of General Wood, which would place him about one mile this side of his old camp, telling him that he would probably be relieved by to-morrow evening or next morning. First part of day warm; from 8 to 2 p.m. very hot; 2 p.m. until sundown rain. 8 p.m., reported to General Thomas that the First and Third Divisions had arrived at this place (near Schofield's headquarters) and had gone into camp.
July 11.--8 a.m., received note from General Newton, dated July 11, stating that last evening General Dodge arrived and relieved his troops, and that they now remain in reserve on the south side of the river; also, that he fortified his position on the other side of the river, and he wished it so arranged that he could return to his old camp and get the shelter-tents and camp equipage of his men that he left behind. 8 a.m., sent note to Major-General Thomas asking to have General Newton returned by to-morrow if possible, as he marched without wagons or shelter-tents, and has left his pickets behind him, &c., and he was given to understand that he would return immediately, hence his want of preparation. 9 a.m., received note from General Newton, stating that he had been ordered by General Sherman to remain at Roswell Ferry until further orders; requesting to be relieved as soon as possible; also to have the pickets at his old camp relieved; and if he was to stay where he is to have them sent to him. 9 a.m., replied in note to General Newton, saying that a strong application had been made to General Thomas to have him relieved by to-morrow, &c. 9 a.m., sent word to the officer in command of General Newton's picket-line (at the old camp)to withdraw it and place it as a guard over his tents, camp equipage, &c., and word to have his regimental wagons sent to his supply train. 11.45 a.m., received Special Field Orders, No. 32, headquarters Military Division of the Mississippi, dated July 10, 1864, as follows :
12.45 p.m., received note from General Newton saying General Dodge had relieved him, and offered to order him back; that he had withdrawn to the north bank of the river. 1 p.m., directed Newton to join this corps as soon as Dodge has completed his bridge and works, and to take position at the point mentioned in the note of 4 p.m. yesterday, sent to him from these headquarters. 4 p.m., received note from General Thomas, stating that orders had been given for General Newton to return as soon as relieved by General Dodge, and that he (General T[homas]) thinks he will return today. 4.30 p.m., received orders from General Thomas (verbal, per Brigadier-General Whipple, assistant adjutant-general) to secure the hill at Powers' Ferry, on south side, just below the crossing, and to lay a pontoon bridge over the river at that point. 5 p.m., in accordance with instructions from General Thomas, Colonel Buell, commanding pontoon train, reported to General Howard for orders, and he was instructed to lay one of the pontoon bridges now used by General Schofield over the river at Powers' Ferry early to-mor-row, July 12. 6 p.m., directed General Stanley to march his division over the river, crossing on one of General Schofield's pontoon bridges early in the morning, and to move down and take possession of the hill near the crossing at Powers' Ferry, to hold the same, and to strengthen this position when he gained it. No skirmishing or picket-firing to-day. Day very hot.
July 12.--3 a.m., received instructions from Major-General Thomas to move the whole corps to the south of the river. 3 a.m., sent a note to General Newton, at Roswell Ferry, directing him to return to his old camp and make preparations to cross the river at Powers' Ferry. 5 a.m., Stanley started with his division across the river, moving over the pontoon bridge at Phillips' Ferry. From the south side of the river, at this point, he is to move down and occupy the ridge near Powers' Ferry. 7 a.m., directed General Wood to cross over the pontoon bridge, which Colonel Buell was to throw over the river at Powers' Ferry, at 10 a.m. to-day. General Wood left camp at 11 a.m., and reached the ferry at 11.30 a.m., but was not able to cross until after 12 m., the time when the pontoon bridge was completed. 1 p.m., received note from department headquarters, stating that if Colonel Buell had a bridge down at Powers' Ferry to relieve it as soon as the trestle is completed at Phillips' Ferry, and to order Colonel Buell to bridge the river at Pace's Ferry; also, Captain Kossak, who is at the saw-mill at Rottenwood Creek, will put his bridge down at Powers' when Buell's is taken up. The necessary orders in this matter were at once given. 4.10 p.m., reported to General Thomas that the two divisions (Stanley's and Wood's) have crossed the river and gone into position. Wood is on the left and Stanley on the right. The ridge they occupy is a short distance from the river, and running nearly parallel thereto, and being in advance of the one occupied by General Schofield, almost masking his troops. 7.45 p.m., General Newton reports that he has returned to his old camp. 8 p.m., directed General Newton to issue clothing to his troops, and to be prepared to move over the river in the morning; that orders would be sent to him directing him when to march. No skirmishing or picket-firing to-day. The enemy on the south side of the river (a few cavalry) fled at our approach. Day very hot; a slight shower at 3.30 p.m.
July 13.--5 a.m., directed General Wood to move his division to the ridge in his front as early as practicable this morning, and to occupy as wide a front thereon as he can, and that General Newton will go into position on his left. 5 a.m., directed General Newton to cross the Chattahoochee this morning over the pontoon bridge at Powers' Ferry, and to occupy a position on the second ridge on the south side thereof, on the left of General Wood's division. 9 a.m., General Newton crossing the river. 12 m., was verbally directed by General Thomas to move a division to Pace's Ferry and cover the laying of a pontoon bridge at that place (over which the Fourteenth Corps are to cross) in the morning. 6 p.m., received note from General Schofield, stating that he will advance his right and connect with our left to-night. 7.20 p.m., directed General Newton to double his picket-line and advance it, in conjunction with General Wood, at 5 a.m. to-morrow, to the corn-field in his front, where the enemy's pickets were this afternoon. Also directed him to send two regiments, and, if possible, all his pioneers, early in the morning, to assist General Stanley in building the trestle bridge over the river at Powers' Ferry; General Newton to build that part of the bridge from the south bank to the island, and Stanley that part from the island to the north bank. Stanley was directed this afternoon to build the bridge, and he thinks, with the assistance of General Newton, that he can construct it in one day, by to-morrow evening, provided he can get spikes, &c. 8 p.m., General Howard reported to General Thomas that he had reconnoitered a mile to our front and right; that there are cavalry pickets, but no infantry pickets on the bluff just across Island Creek, &c. 8.30 p.m., directed General Wood to move the Úlite of his division at 5 a.m. to-morrow down the south side of the river to Pace's Ferry, for the purpose of covering the laying of a pontoon bridge at that point; to take one-half of his ambulances; leave the other half, his trains, &c., behind; not to relieve his picket-line, but advance it at 5 a.m. to-morrow in conjunction with General Newton's; after the bridge has been thrown over the river, and as soon as General Baird commences to cross his division, to return to his present camp. 9 p.m., informed General Newton that some of the enemy's scouts were trying to pass out of our lines; to watch well to his left to-night for them; informed him that General Schofield will come up on his left in the morning. 12.20 p.m., received dispatch from General Thomas, stating that as General Sherman wished to wait until he hears from Stoneman before crossing the Fourteenth Corps, the movement will be delayed until further orders. Day very hot. No skirmishing, but considerable picket-firing since dark.
July 14.--12.30 a.m., directed General Wood not to move in the morning as directed, nor until further orders; also directed him and General Newton not to advance their pickets this morning. Generals Stanley and Newton working at the trestle bridge at Powers' Ferry. Nothing of importance occurred. Waiting on General Stoneman. As soon as General Sherman hears from him, or he returns from his expedition, we will advance. Day very hot. Heavy fall of rain, commencing at dark and lasting two hours. But little picket-firing.
July 15.--Nothing of importance occurred to-day. We remained in camp waiting orders to advance. Day very hot. No skirmishing or picket-firing of any consequence.
July 16.--10 a.m., received a note from Major-General Thomas, directing that one division of this corps move at daylight to-morrow morning down the river to Pace's Ferry and cover the laying of the bridge and the crossing of one division of the Fourteenth Corps, after which the division to return to its camp. I p.m., received Special Field Orders, No. 35, from headquarters Military Division of the Mississippi (General Sherman), dated July 14, 1864, as follows:(*) 3 p.m., sent directions to General Wood to move the Úlite of his division, starting at 4.30 a.m. to-morrow, down the south side of the Chattahoochee to Pace s Ferry, for the purpose of covering the laying of a pontoon bridge at that point; as soon as said bridge has been laid and one division of the Fourteenth Corps has crossed over to return to his present camp; leave his picketline on, but take no train (but one-half of ambulance train) or camp or garrison equipage and but one battery. At same hour informed Generals Stanley and Newton of the movement that is to be made in the morning. General Stanley finished the trestle bridge to-day at Powers' Ferry. Nothing of importance occurred during the day. Very hot. But little picket-firing.
July 17.--4.30 a.m., General Wood started with his division to Pace's Ferry. 12.30 p.m., received a note from General Newton, stating that the rebel picket-line is advancing in his front. At once sent word to General Stanley to push out a brigade to General Wood's lines, but not to disturb his camp, and to remain there until Wood returns. 12.35, informed General Newton that Stanley had been ordered to push out a brigade to Wood's lines, and requested him to state whether the enemy's pickets were infantry or cavalry. 1 p.m., General Newton reported that the enemy advanced on General Kimball's front on a run. There was sharp firing, which has now receded. He is of the opinion that the enemy are after Schofield's train. The enemy are dismounted, but he does not know whether they were infantry or cavalry. At once sent word to General Newton to send out two regiments to reconnoiter and see what the enemy meant or were after. 1.20 p.m., received a note from General Wood, who was at Pace's Ferry, stating that he arrived there without serious opposition; took a few prisoners; that the pontoon bridge had been laid and part of one division of the Fourteenth Corps has crossed over, but as General Thomas has directed him to wait until two divisions cross over he cannot get back to his old camp until night-fall. 4 p.m., General Newton reported that he had sent out two regiments on a reconnaissance, and that they had gone about two miles to his front and met nothing but General Schofield's skirmishers; that the enemy's pickets and skirmishers had fallen back from his front, and that said two regiments had just returned. 5.30 p.m., General Wood's division returned from Pace's Ferry. 8 p.m., directed Generals Stanley and Wood each to detail one small regiment as guard for the general supply train of the corps, to be commanded by the senior officer of the two regiments; for them to report at the train to-morrow morning, and for the commanding officer of the same to leave two companies at the trestle bridge at Powers' Ferry as a guard for the same; to encamp on the island. 8.30 p.m., sent circulars to division commanders, directing them that when the troops left their present camp to take the ambulance, ammunition, division, and brigade headquarters trains with them; that all other trains, save corps headquarters train would be left in the rear on the north side of the river. 8.30 p.m., directed division commanders to be ready to move at 5 a.m. to-morrow. 11.30 p.m., received Special Field Orders, No. 36, headquarters Military Division of the Mississippi (General Sherman), dated July 17, 1864, as follows:
Memorandum to the foregoing Special Field Orders, received at the same hour-- 11.30 p.m., sent signal dispatch to Major-General Thomas, asking whether the corps is to move in the morning. No orders have been received at corps headquarters save General Sherman's Special Field Orders, No. 36.
July 18 --12.30 a.m., the following order received from Major-General Thomas by General Howard: "You will commence the execution of the orders of General Sherman, copies of which were sent you this evening, at daylight to-morrow a.m." 1 a.m., received answer to signal dispatch to General Thomas saying, "Prepare to move at daylight; will send orders by courier." 1 a.m., sent to the division commanders orders of the day for the Fourth Army Corps for July 18, 1864, as follows:
5 a.m., received from headquarters Department of the Cumberland (General Thomas) the orders of the day for July 18, 1864, as follows:
Accompanying this order was a copy of a letter of instructions, dated headquarters Military Division of the Mississippi, July 17, 1864, and written to General Thomas by Major-General Sherman. The following is a copy:
4.30 a.m., the corps left camp, Newton leading, followed by Stanley, and then Wood; about two miles out from camp met the enemy's skirmishers--dismounted cavalry or infantry; soon drove them back, skirmishing all of the way to Nancy's Creek. 7 a.m., arrived at Nancy's Creek and drove the enemy's skirmishers across it. Here he made quite a stubborn stand for the force he had. He opened upon us two guns from the high ridge on the opposite side. The bridge over the creek had been destroyed by the enemy, and the road had been blockaded. 9 a.m., two regiments from Hooker's corps, out on a reconnaissance to find the Fourth Corps, came up on our right. They did not go farther than Nancy's Creek, and afterward returned to their corps. 9.40, having opened upon the enemy with artillery, and pressed our skirmishers across the creek, we drove him back. We were obliged to halt here until we could rebuild the bridge for the passage of troops and artillery. 11 a.m., again started forward. 11.45 a.m., after having proceeded one-fourth of a mile again caught up with the enemy. After considerable skirmishing and little artillery firing, again drove him. 12.30 p.m., Newton's head of column, with General Howard and staff, arrived at Buck Head, and found that General Hooker's column had not yet come up, and sent Captain Pearson, commissary of musters, to inform him that the Fourth Corps had arrived, and to tell him of the disposition that would be made of the troops; all on the left of the road down which we marched, and just beyond and covering the Turner's Ferry and Buck Head road. General Newton went into camp, his division in two lines, the right resting on the Roswell Factory and Atlanta road (the road on which he marched), and in front of and covering the Turner's Ferry and Buck Head (or Roswell Factory) road. 2 p.m., General Stanley's division arrived and went into position in two lines on the left of General Newton's division, covering the same road. 3 p.m., Brigadier-General Knipe, of the Twentieth Corps, arrived at Buck Head, and stated that the Twentieth Corps had not yet left camp, but he supposed General Hooker intended to march as soon as he built some bridges over Nancy's Creek. 3 p.m., General Wood's division arrived. As General Hooker has not yet arrived, and as there is no prospect of his arriving before night, General Wood, by direction, placed Hazen's brigade on the right of Roswell Factory and Atlanta road, his left connecting with Newton's right, and placed his two remaining brigades in camp about half a mile in the rear of Newton's division as a reserve, and also to look out for the ammunition trains. 3.15 p.m., messenger arrived from General Schofield, and said his (Schofield's) right is now about one mile from our left. General Stanley was at once directed to keep open communication with General Schofield by patrols; to keep them going often; and sent word to Major-General Schofield that communication would so be kept up with him. 3.30 p.m., directed General Wood to attempt to communicate with General Hooker by patrols from our right. 5 p.m., General Thomas sent word to General Howard by Captain Pearson, who had taken him a message from Buck Head, that unless he (Thomas) got further orders from General Sherman (and in case he did he would send the same to General Howard to-night) that he wished General Howard, with Hooker and Palmer, to push the enemy toward Peach Tree Creek in the morning with a strong skirmish line. 6 p.m., General Hooker's command arrived; head of column at Buck Head. 7 p.m., reported to General Thomas the situation. 9 p.m., published to division commanders orders of the day for the Fourth Army Corps for to-morrow, as follows:
The cavalry force that has been opposing us to-day is Williams' (Kentucky) brigade. The road which we moved on was a road leading from Powers' Ferry to the Roswell Factory and Atlanta road and then down said Roswell Factory and Atlanta road. The roads are good and broader than any roads that we have yet moved on in Georgia. We have had only 6 wounded to-day. A lieutenant-colonel of the enemy was killed and a captain wounded, both of whom fell into our hands. The day very warm.
July 19.--12.45 a.m., received note from department headquarters (General Thomas) stating that at daylight to-morrow morning (on the morning of July 19) General Howard will send a division upon the main road leading from his front to Atlanta; to keep the head of column covered by skirmishers; to press the enemy strongly, and be prepared to re-enforce the division if it becomes necessary. Major-Generals Hooker and Palmer will be each directed to send a division in the same direction, at the same hour, from their fronts. 12.45 a.m., sent instructions modifying orders of the day for Fourth Corps for to-day, as follows: General Wood to make his reconnaissance with two brigades, holding his third under arms ready to support the two at a moment's notice, and to start down the main road to Atlanta, covering his front with a strong line of skirmishers, and to start at 5 a.m. instead of 6; Generals Stanley and Newton will make their reconnaissances at 5 a.m. instead of 6, and with one regiment only, and to hold their divisions in readiness to support General Wood. 5 a.m., Generals Wood, Stanley, and Newton started on the reconnaissances indicated in orders this a.m. and last night. About one mile from Peach Tree Creek the enemy commenced skirmishing with General Wood. (This was also about one mile from Buck Head.) General Wood drove them before him, and reached Peach Tree Creek at 6.30 a.m. The skirmishers were driven over the creek and burned the bridge as they crossed. The enemy has a good bridge-head on the other side of the creek that can be seen; it is constructed for infantry. Considerable smoke can be discerned on the ridge about half a mile beyond the river; appears to be a camp. Brought up our artillery and opened on the enemy; he replied with artillery. The crossing of Peach Tree Creek at this point is impracticable, with very considerable force on the other side. At 8 a.m. reported to General Thomas General Wood's position, &c., and General Wood is now halting, waiting further instructions from General Thomas to General Howard. 8.40 a.m., General Corse, of General Sherman's staff, reported to General Howard with instructions from General Sherman to push toward Schofield (who has crossed north fork of Peach Tree Creek) if heavy firing is heard in that direction, by crossing the north fork of Peach Tree Creek. 8.50, General Newton reports that the regiment which he sent out on reconnaissance this morning came up with the enemy fortified--supposed to be a brigade of infantry--at the north fork of Peach Tree Creek. After some skirmishing the regiment started back, supposing the reconnaissance completed, but he sent it back with an additional regiment to the cross-roads about one mile from his picket-line, to remain there until further orders. 9 a.m., General Stanley reported that the regiment which he sent out had arrived at 8 a.m. at the crossing of the north fork of Peach Tree Creek, that the bridge had been burned, and the small force of the enemy that had been posted there was driven away. At once directed him to secure the bridge, if possible, by throwing a force over the creek, and to strengthen his force there if necessary by a brigade. General Stanley sent Grose's brigade for this purpose. 9 a.m., received Special Field Orders, No. 37, headquarters Military Division of the Mississippi, dated near Cross Keys, Ga., July 18, 1864, as follows :
Accompanying this order was a letter from Major-General Sherman to Major-General Thomas, of which the following is a copy, dated headquarters Military Division of the Mississippi, July 18, 1864 :(*)
9.30 a.m., reported our situation and position of forces and results of reconnaissances to General Thomas. 11.20 a.m., received dispatch from General Thomas, directing General Howard to push forward as fast as possible in the direction of Atlanta at once, and sent word to General Wood to push over the Peach Tree Creek, to bring forward Hazen's brigade, and if his other two brigades succeed in getting over to relieve them there by Hazen's brigade and let them come back to camp for their camp and garrison equipage, then to move forward and join Hazen. Also instructed Generals Stanley and Newton to follow up the movement. 2.50 p.m., received a note from Major-General Sherman, addressed to General Howard, and dated 12 m. to-day, stating that he wished this corps to cross Peach Tree Creek in the direction of Decatur or Pea Vine Creek; that General Schofield had been sent to communicate with this corps, but his men had been fired on, he supposed by Stanley's men, and they went back; this was at the second crossing from the mouth of the south fork. He further states:
You will have no trouble in crossing the two forks of Peach Tree anywhere above the fork. General Schofield now holds the forks of the Atlanta and Decatur roads, and is skirmishing on both, but soon thinks that he will have the head of his column at Decatur. McPherson is approaching the same objective point from the east, having torn up the railroad good. I will write to General Thomas by a courier, and give him such orders as will enable him to put your corps across both forks of Peach Tree between Schofield and your present position.
3 p.m., in accordance with General Sherman's instructions, at once sent word to General Stanley to push his whole division over the bridge he has constructed over north fork of Peach Tree Creek, on the Decatur road, the road on which he made the reconnaissance to-day. Also sent word to Generals Newton and Wood to be prepared to follow this movement, Newton to be prepared in one hour's time. 3 p.m., Knefler's brigade, of Wood's division, forces a crossing over Peach Tree Creek a short distance below the Atlanta road, and, moving toward that road with heavy skirmishing and under rapid artillery fire, succeeds in driving the enemy out of his strong bridge-head at the point where the Atlanta road crosses the creek. They drove back a brigade of infantry. General Wood at once commenced to cross Gibson's brigade to support Knefler. Wood's troops sustained slight loss in crossing at the point mentioned, as it was under the cover of high ground on the enemy's side of the creek, and the crossing was made under a heavy artillery fire from our own guns. The enemy have been driven back to a ridge a short distance from the river. Prisoners taken, who were from Hardee's corps, state that the main part of Johnston's army is about one mile or two miles back from the river, across the Atlanta road, and strongly fortified. 4.20 p.m., received verbal instructions from Major-Gen-eral Thomas to move directly on Atlanta to-morrow morning, starting at 5 a.m.; for the corps so to move. 4.25, preparatory to making this movement directed General Newton to move his division as soon as possible to the Atlanta road crossing of Peach Tree Creek, to put his division on the left of the Atlanta road and near to the creek on this side, and to be ready to support General Wood's troops on the other side of the creek; also leave his pickets on the road he made the reconnaissance to-day, at the same place he had been picketing this evening. General Newton arrived at the place indicated and put in two brigades on this side of the river, and threw the other over the river to the support of Hazen's brigade, of Wood's division, that is occupying the enemy's bridge-head. (This brigade crossed at about 4.30 p.m.) General Hazen directed to relieve Knefler's and Gibson's brigades, of Wood's division, now on the other side of the creek, at dark, and let them return to camp to make preparations for the march to-morrow. 4.25, sent word to Stanley to push his whole division over north fork of Peach Tree Creek, and make preparations to advance toward Atlanta to-morrow. 6 p.m., published order of the day for the corps to-morrow, as follows :(*) 9 p.m., General Schofield now about one mile from Stanley's left. The corps has advanced about two and a half or three miles to-day. General Wood captured 35 prisoners, 1 lieutenant-colonel, 1 captain, and 2 lieutenants, all from Hardee's corps. Our losses in killed and wounded very small for the work done and results; about 25 killed and wounded.
July 20.---4.30 a.m., reported to Major-General Thomas for instructions as to Stanley's and Newton's routes of march, and he said that the programme was somewhat changed--in this, that Newton would move down the Atlanta road from his present position on the same, and that Wood (two brigades of whose division have gone back to Buck Head, and one remains at the crossing of Peach Tree Creek with Newton) would move with his whole division, and join Stanley, and then move directly toward Atlanta. 6 a.m., directed General Wood to march at once to join General Stanley on the other side of the north fork of Peach Tree Creek. 6 a.m., directed General Newton to move down the road toward Atlanta, as previously directed, to keep up connection with General Hooker, and to report to-day directly to General Thomas, and that the other two divisions of the corps will be pushed to a connection with him as soon as it can be done. 6.25, received note from General Stanley saying that his pickets are across south fork of Peach Tree Creek; that the main Atlanta road branches from the Decatur road (on which he is) one mile from his position; that the enemy has been busy fortifying in his front all night, and a prisoner reports Cleburne's and Hindman's divisions took up a position in his front last evening. 6.50, ordered Stanley to advance, not directly forward toward Atlanta, but by the road that leads toward Decatur, and down the Atlanta road when he reaches it. He thus would move rather by the left flank and almost in a circle and approach Schofield. 7 a.m., Stanley started, and the head of Wood's column reaches Stanley's bridge, over the north fork of Peach Tree Creek. 7 a.m., directed Wood to relieve Stanley's pickets in the fork of south and north forks of Peach Tree Creek. 7.15 a.m., directed General Wood to leave a regiment on the north side of the bridge over north fork of Peach Tree Creek as a guard for the same, and for the trains on Decatur road (Stanley's bridge). 7.20 a.m., directed General Wood to leave his leading brigade in General Stanley's works, facing Hindman's and Cleburne's divisions, until all troops of his division, corps train, &c., have passed. 8.30 a.m., received Special Field Orders, No. 39, Military Division of the Mississippi (Sherman), dated July 19, 1864, as follows :(*)
8.30 a.m., received communication from headquarters Department of the Cumberland, of which following is a copy :(*)
NOTE.--As Wood's division returned to Buck Head (two brigades), and as Newton crossed to south side of the creek, Wood was directed to join Stanley instead of Newton.
8.30, Stanley reaches the south fork of Peach Tree Creek and commences to skirmish with the enemy. At same time and place an officer reported from General Schofield, and stated that his command was about one mile off, on the road that converges toward the one we are moving upon, and meets about two and one-fourth miles from Atlanta. The enemy burned the bridge at this point, and column halted to build a new one. The skirmish line waded the creek and drove the enemy back to a ridge beyond. 10 a.m., bridge completed, and column moved on. 10.25, about three-fourths of a mile from bridge met the enemy's skirmishers in force. His strong skirmish line is driven from rail barricades by Stanley's skirmishers, and the enemy opens upon them (Stanley's skirmishers) with artillery from their main works, about one-third of a mile beyond. 10.40, messenger from General Sherman, who says, "Move forward and develop the enemy; see whether he is in force." Prisoners we have taken say that Stevenson's division (late Hood's) is in Stanley's and Schofield's front. 10.50, ordered Stanley to fire from his batteries, which are now in position on his skirmish line, supported by a regiment or two, and to prepare to advance his skirmishers. Considerable skirmish firing yet. 10.55, received note from General Newton, stating that he had not advanced yet, as General Hooker has not got all of his force over the creek, and is three-fourths to one mile in his rear, waiting for him to, come up. 2 p.m., the skirmishers of Gibson's brigade, of Wood s division, which remained in the works Stanley left this a.m., now almost connect with Stanley's right as he is posted in his new position. 2.20 p.m., Major-General Sherman told General Howard that McPherson is now within two miles of Atlanta, on the Augusta railroad, and the enemy may withdraw from our front to meet him, as he is moving on and has been opposed by nothing but cavalry and artillery. 2.30 p.m., sent word to General Wood to push Gibson forward to see whether the enemy has gone, as they may have withdrawn to oppose McPherson. Gibson pushed out his skirmishers, and found them still in force in the same position. 2.30 p.m., directed General Stanley to deploy two brigades on the ridge rather to his right, to face southeast, and to feel toward the right with skirmishers. 2.45 p.m., received a note from General- Newton, stating that he has driven the enemy from their first rifle-pits (skirmish rifle-pits) with his artillery. 3.50 p.m., Stanley drives the enemy from a second line of strongly constructed skirmish rifle-pits--the strongest they have dug during this campaign--with his skirmish line, capturing about 50 prisoners from Stevenson's corps. 4.25 p.m., the enemy came out of his works and made a charge to recover his rifle-pits, but he was handsomely repulsed. 5 p.m., Stanley has advanced his batteries, and now fires canister at the enemy. His main and very strong line of works but a few hundred yards in Stanley's front. Informed General Sherman that the enemy is in force in our front. 5.15, Wood brings up Hazen's and Knefler's brigades, and puts Knefler in position on the right of Stanley, on the south side of south' fork of Peach Tree Creek, and leaves Hazen's brigade in reserve in the rear of and between Knefler's and Gibson's brigades. 8 p.m., instructed division commanders to watch the enemy closely to-night, and if he attempts to retreat to follow him up, if possible, and annoy him as much as he can. 8.30 p.m., staff officer from General Newton reports that the enemy attacked him while he was going into position this afternoon; that his left was "in the air," and the enemy sent a large force to turn his left flank; that he refused his left, and the enemy then attacked him and he was repulsed with severe loss, while his (Newton's) was incredibly small. 9 p.m., General Stanley reports that Colonel Grose drove the enemy, at 7.10 p.m., out of a new line of rifle-pits on the right of those he was last driven out of this p.m., taking a number of prisoners. Captured about 60 prisoners to-day (not counting Newton's division), and loss in killed and wounded not over 25 in Stanley's division; Wood not engaged. P.S.--Newton lost in killed and wounded 102.
July 21.--5 a.m., General Wood reports that Colonel Gibson reports that the enemy left his front at about 3 this a.m., and that he is in his works. 5.30 a.m., Stanley reports the enemy gone from Grose's front, but that he remains in front of the rest of his command; supposed that the enemy is contracting his lines, drawing nearer to Atlanta. 6 a.m., directed General Wood to swing up, to wheel to the left, and to keep Hazen in supporting distance of Knefler and Gibson (of Wood's division). 7 a.m., received note from General Newton, stating that after he relieved Hazen's brigade yesterday p.m., and after he had taken the ridge in his front, occupying it with Kimball's and Blake's brigades, and as Colonel Bradley's brigade was marching up the road in column (being then in T shape), and as his skirmishers were again advancing (he had no connection on the left but connected with the Twentieth Corps on the right), the enemy inserted a column on the ridge and pressed it forward so as to threaten his left flank and rear. He refused his left and the enemy attacked with vehemence. Blake (on the left) was supported by Bradley, and Bradley also threw regiments along the road to repel the attack in his (Newton's) rear. The enemy was splendidly repulsed. Immediately afterward the enemy attacked Newton's right and was again repulsed, and he afterward kept up the same tactics all day. He (the enemy) lost very heavily, especially in Kimball's front. Newton says his loss incredibly small, not over 80 killed and wounded. Bate's division attacked his rear and left flank, and Walker's his front, and Cheatham's division came around his right. 11 a.m., Generals Stanley and Wood have wheeled around to the left until they are within musket-range of the enemy's main line of works, and skirmishing is very heavy.
General Wood's right is advanced about one mile and a half. General Stanley's left brigade did not move, as it was already within easy musket-range of the same line of works. From General Wood's position about one mile in extent of the enemy's works is plainly visible. They have the appearance of having been built some five or six weeks ago. Stanley's left brigade is covered by breast-works, and the rest of his division, with Wood's, is rapidly constructing such, some of the troops of Knefler's brigade being much exposed in this work; he has lost 15 men thus far while at it. 11.30 a.m., one of Colonel Gibson's staff officers reports that the enemy is massing in front of our right. This can be hardly so. The enemy can be seen, though, moving troops to his left and then back again. 12.15 p.m., directed General Stanley to hold Kirby's brigade (his reserve brigade) in readiness to move to our right if it should be attacked. 2 p.m., received note from General Stanley, dated 12.20 p.m., stating that Schofield had been there and that he was very anxious for him to relieve Colonel Hobson's brigade (on our extreme left). Replied to this by writing a note to General Schofield, telling him of the position of the troops of this corps, and that it would be almost impossible to relieve Colonel Hobson now. 2 p.m., directed General Stanley to relieve General Wood s two left regiments by one regiment of his division, and to block up the ravine between himself and General Wood as much as he can by felling timber, cutting down underbrush, &c. 2 p.m., instructed General Wood that one of General Stanley's divisions will relieve his two left regiments, which two regiments are to be used to strengthen his right. 7 p.m., reported to General Thomas position of troops and occurrences of the day. To-day we have closed up on the enemy and are pressing him strongly. Skirmishing briskly all of the day. Our losses not yet ascertained. Have captured a few prisoners.
July 22.--3 a.m., General Stanley reports that the enemy has evacuated his main works in his front and that his skirmishers occupy the same. Reported this fact to General Sherman at once. 5 a.m., General Wood reports his skirmishers in the enemy's main line of works, and that he (the enemy) evacuated the same at 12 o'clock last night. 5.30 a.m., received note from Major-General Sherman, dated 4.40 a.m., as follows:
Schofield has reported the enemy's main line in his possession. Satisfy yourself on this point, and don't enter Atlanta, but join your army in the pursuit south.
5 a.m., Stanley and Wood started on the march after the enemy, and came up with his skirmishers about two miles from camp. Heavy skirmishing. About two miles from Atlanta met the enemy in his exterior rifle-pits. Halted, and Stanley commenced to deploy. 7 a.m., received instructions from Major-General Sherman to deploy and feel toward our left for Schofield, and make and keep up connection, as the enemy has made a stand again at Atlanta within his forts and defensive works. 8 a.m., directed General Wood, who is marching on a direct road to Atlanta, to deploy and connect with Stanley. He (Wood)is now two miles from Atlanta, in two brigades, one in reserve. 8.20, Stanley deploying two brigades, one in reserve, connects with Schofield, now connected by skirmishers with his left. 8.50 a.m., General Hooker's skirmishers have come up and connect with us by skirmishers. 9 a.m., head of Newton's column arrives at Walker's house, on the Atlanta road, about the position where Wood moves in to the left, and about two miles from the city. He is on the direct road leading from Buck Head to Atlanta. He is directed to go into line, facing Atlanta, and connecting on the left with General Wood. 9.25 a.m., General Sherman directs General Howard to keep connection with General Schofield and not to break it until to-morrow, when he can join General Thomas; not to mind the connection with General Hooker. 9.30 a.m., received orders from Major-General Thomas not to break connection with General Hooker. At once sent word to General Thomas of General Sherman's order, and proceeded to join. 9.40 a.m., directed General Newton to reserve one brigade to cover his right until Hooker makes perfect connection with him, and if we move forward to keep up connection and move with General Wood. 12.30 p.m., directed General Stanley to get all of his artillery in position and to fire on Atlanta at 3 p.m. All of the batteries to his left, of Sherman's army, will open upon Atlanta at the same hour. 1.15 p.m., it is reported to General Sherman that the enemy has turned McPherson's left, and that McPherson is now being attacked. General Sherman directed General Howard, who is at his headquarters, to have our batteries open on Atlanta at once, and to have our skirmishers advance. 1.45 p.m., General Newton reports that it is important to hold the road that passes by what will be his right flank, if he connects with Wood, and that he must keep a force on the right of it. 1.50, sent word to Newton to put one brigade in line on the right of the road, and the other in line on the left, and at the same time directed General Wood to stretch out and connect with Newton. In reply to this message General Newton said that he would now advance the brigade that he is to put on the right of the road and connect with General Hooker on a ridge. 2.10 p.m., General Corse, of General Sherman's staff, called at field headquarters on the way to General Thomas, and directed General Howard to be ready to move to the left as soon as he gets orders; that the enemy has turned McPherson's left, and that McPherson has been killed. Orders were at once sent to division commanders to be ready to move as soon as called upon, &c. McPherson's army was attacked in the rear, the enemy having passed around his left flank. Afterwards the left front of Schofield was attacked, which was about 4.45 p.m. It appears that the enemy is rolling his attack down toward our position. 5.15, division commanders directed to have their troops stand to arms in the front line. 5.40 p.m., directed General Stanley to send two regiments back as a guard to the bridge he built over the north fork of Peach Tree Creek. This order countermanded at 7 p.m. 6 p.m., General Stanley puts all of his troops in line of battle. His reserve brigade was put on his left to relieve Schofield's right brigade, which was moved off to the left and rear to prevent the enemy from again turning the army. 7.30 p.m., directed Major-General Stanley to send fifty men to the rear to the point where his column turns off of the Decatur road in marching to his present position, as a guard or alarm post. At same time directed General Newton to send a small force for a like purpose to the point' where he crossed Peach Tree Creek, and, at same time, directed General Wood to send a small force for a like purpose about two miles to the rear toward the camp he left this a.m. No call was made for the troops of the corps to move to the left. The enemy attacked the Army of the Tennessee with three corps. At first he (the enemy) had the advantage, but was afterward driven back. Our assistance was not needed. This evening the right of this corps connects with General Hooker's left, on the right of the Buck Head and Atlanta road, and the left connects with Schofield's right on the road that leads to Atlanta via Hurt's house, as laid down on the map. Our lines are now well strung out, the corps occupying a front of over two miles. By 3 p.m. we were in position behind strong works. The rest of the breast-works were built within half an hour after the troops came up this a.m., in almost an incredibly short time. Have lost but few men killed and wounded, and we have taken over 90 prisoners. The enemy has been firing steadily upon us all the afternoon with his artillery from the forts of Atlanta in our front. 8 p.m., sent note to General Thomas, stating that the two regiments would not now be sent to guard the rear from the enemy's cavalry; it is not necessary, as General Sherman has again gained possession of Decatur. Day hot and clear. P.S.--About 25 killed and wounded to-day.
July 23.--10 a.m., received Special Field Orders, No. 41, headquarters Military Division of the Mississippi, dated near Atlanta, July 22, 1864, as follows: (*)
In accordance with the foregoing orders the artillery of this corps has been firing on Atlanta during this afternoon, and the enemy has been replying from his forts. Our camps are in easy artillery range; also corps headquarters. 7 p.m., directed the division commanders to bring in the troops that they sent out last evening to establish alarm posts. Considerable skirmish to-day. Losses not reported; small, though. Day very cool for July. P.S.--About 18 killed and wounded to-day.
July 24.--10 a.m., directed General Wood to relieve one brigade of General Stanley's division (Grose's), and to occupy the front now occupied by said brigade together with his own. Directed General Stanley to occupy the rest of his present front with one brigade and to held his other two brigades in reserve. Also, directed General Newton to occupy his present front with one brigade and to hold two brigades in reserve. Generals Stanley's and Newton's reserve brigades, four in all, to be placed in such position as to re-enforce the left of the army or to meet an attack in the rear, after the Army of the Tennessee moves from our left. It is the intention to move the Army of the Tennessee to the right of the army, on Palmer's right, and when this is done Schofield is to refuse his command (which will then be the left), so as to form at almost right angles with this corps, his left resting toward the two forks of Peach Tree Creek. Garrard's cavalry will be on the left of Schofield. Nothing of importance done to-day. Principally employed in reconnoitering for positions for the reserve brigades, &c. We have been firing shell and shot from our guns into Atlanta during the whole day, and the enemy replies with his guns from the works around the city. Considerable skirmishing along our lines. No reports made of the casualties to-day, but the list is small. Day quite cool for July, and bright. General Newton seized a ridge in his front to-night and advanced some troops upon the same. He has strengthened the position by good works. P. S.--Twenty killed and wounded to-day.
July 25.--8.20 a.m., General Newton reports that Colonel Lane's regiment was advanced some distance up the ridge in his front last night, and he (Colonel Lane) reports this morning that the enemy is putting artillery in his front. He wishes, also, to know whether General Wood is to give him any assistance in taking part of his line; says he is building works for Generals Wood and Hooker, and does not wish to do so any longer. Replied to this note at 9.30 a.m., as follows:
General Newton will take such measures as he deems necessary to hold his line with as small a force as possible; he will also make it as impregnable as he can. The general commanding has no control over General Hooker's forces. He (Hooker) agreed to place two regiments on your right, but he has not done so yet. General Wood's line is now two-thirds longer than yours.
It appears that General Wood cannot put two brigades in reserve, only one. This will give three reserve brigades from this corps when the contemplated movement is to be made. Considerable skirmishing to-day and artillery firing from both sides. Losses during the day, about 20 killed and wounded. Day pleasant for July; clear.
July 26.--Skirmishing and artillery firing during the greater part of the morning. Nothing further of interest. 3 p.m., received circular, of which following is a copy :(*)
5 p.m., received copy of Special Field Orders, No. 42, headquarters Military Division of the Mississippi (Sherman), dated near Atlanta, Ga., July 25, 1864, as follows:(+)
5.15 p.m., directed General Newton to send his reserve brigade to the rear of his headquarters, if he has not done so, so that it may be moved in any direction desired. He replied at 6 p.m. that he had done so. 5.40 p.m., directed General Stanley to immediately move the two reserve brigades of his division to the abandoned works of the enemy on the left of General Schofield, his left to rest at the point where he crossed said works when marching to his present position; that the movement must be made before General Logan moves from his present position. 7.30 p.m., reported to General Thomas the movement of these three brigades. 10 p.m., received note from Major-General Sherman, of which the following is a copy:(+)
10.30 p.m., received note from Major-General Stanley, stating that Colonel Grose, after getting into position, found that his line (the line occupied by the division)would not be reasonably safe without one more regiment on his left, and asks that General Wood relieve his right regiment that he may place it on his left. The note was referred to General Wood, and he was requested to relieve said right regiment of Colonel Grose's brigade. General Wood relieved the regiment before daylight. 11.15 p.m., received note, of which the following is a copy:
One of General Newton's brigades sent back in the rear as reserve to-day, and two of Stanley's brigades were sent to the rear, on the left of Major-General Schofield s refused left. The day has been warm. The usual amount of skirmishing, and more artillery fire than usual. Loss of the corps in killed and wounded about 15.
July 27.--2 a.m., received Special Field Orders, No. 204, headquarters Department of the Cumberland, dated July 26, 1864, relieving Major-General Howard from the command of the Fourth Army Corps, he having been assigned to command the Army of the Tennessee. General Stanley was at once notified that General Howard would leave headquarters at 4.30 this a.m., to take command of the Army of the Tennessee. 5 a.m., Major-General Stanley took command of the corps and issued orders to division commanders, stating this fact, at 6 a.m. 7 a.m., division commanders commenced to make demonstrations to cover the movement to the left. The enemy opened heavy artillery fires upon us and we returned like fires. Skirmishing heavy all along our lines during the day. General Newton drove back the enemy's skirmishers and took possession of a ridge in his front, which he now holds. 6 p.m., the movement to the right progressing very slowly. Not all of the troops have yet passed this corps. Usual skirmishing to-day. Lost to-day in killed and wounded 32. Warm and clear.
July 28.--12 m., up to this hour usual skirmishing and artillery firing from both sides. 2 p.m., very heavy firing heard on the right (Army of the Tennessee). 3.30 p.m., received instructions from Major-General Thomas to make a demonstration in front of this corps, driving the enemy's skirmishers back if possible, and find whether the enemy was in strength in our front. 3.30 p.m., verbal instructions in accordance with General Thomas' order were given to Generals Newton and Wood, who were at headquarters, and written instructions were sent to Colonel Grose to make the demonstration. 4 p.m., General Wood's and Colonel Grose's (commanding General Stanley's old division) skirmishers advanced. After very heavy skirmishing drove the enemy from his skirmish rifle-pits, which were very strong, and occupied them, taking about 50 prisoners. The enemy could be discerned in force in their main works, 200 or 390 yards beyond our skirmish line. Our skirmishers have advanced from 300 to 500 yards in front of Wood's and Grose's divisions, and are strongly intrenching their advanced position. General Newton, for some reason, did not advance his skirmishers. 8.30 p.m., reported result of to-day's operations to General Thomas. During the night our advanced position was strengthened and strong breast-works thrown up all along the line now held by us and from which we drove the enemy's skirmishers. Lost in killed and wounded 28. Took 43 prisoners, 3 of whom were commissioned officers. Day clear and hot.
July 29.--6 a.m., received note from Major-General Thomas, dated July 28, stating that he wished General Stanley, commanding Fourth Corps, to thin out his lines to-morrow (to-day, July 29), so as to make good reserves for action, and to have such reserves ready to move at any moment. At once sent copies to division commanders, and directed them to reserve as large a force as possible from their lines. 9 a.m., received verbal message from General Thomas, stating that our lines will not be changed to-day. 9 a.m., General Newton [reports] that the pickets of one of his brigades are occupying the enemy's skirmish rifle-pits. 10 a.m., General Newton reports that upon further examination it appears that the enemy has only retired his picket-line a little, and that his skirmishers have advanced over the open space to the woods. Later in the day General Newton occupied part of the enemy's skirmish rifle-pits, near the Atlanta road, on his left. 5.40 p.m., it is reported to Major-General Stanley that there are only eight of General Newton's men in the abandoned rifle-pits in his front and on the right of the Atlanta road, and he is directed to work up at least thirty men and place them in the same; also to strengthen them, commencing to do so at once, and to occupy seven of said rifle-pits on the left of the Atlanta road. 8 p.m., General Newton reports that his whole picket-line occupies the enemy's abandoned rifle-pits, and will strongly intrench to-night; that he thinks the pits on the left of the road were vacated by some of General Wood's pickets before he could occupy them. Skirmishing along our line during the greater part of the day, and artillery firing was kept up between our batteries and those of the enemy in the forts in front of Atlanta. Casualties not over 15 to-day.
July 30.--Nothing of importance occurred to-day. Day very warm. Our lines or position not changed. Usual skirmishing and artillery firing. Have been strengthening our works to-day.
July 31.--10 a.m., received instructions from Major-General Thomas to refuse our left, to draw back our lines so as to cover the Buck Head road, and let our line be the left flank of the army. 2 p.m., issued Special Orders, No. 118, stating that a new work will be constructed by this command to-morrow, so as to cover the left flank of the army, commencing on Newton's line and running along Pea Vine Creek, intersecting the old rebel works near corps headquarters; General Newton to construct the work at the angle near his present works, General Wood the center, and General Grose the angle turning upon the old rebel works; this work to be commenced immediately after the troops have breakfasted to-morrow, and to be finished before night. But very little skirmishing or artillery or picket firing to-day. The first part of the day very warm; thunder shower in the afternoon. But very few casualties to-day.
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